Both an island and a province, Bohol is one of the most picturesque slices of tropical life in the Philippines. A short ferry ride from Cebu and you will find a surreal landscape of glistening white beaches, waterfalls and subterranean caves, backed by cocoa-brown limestone formations known as the Chocolate Hills.
Things to do in Bohol
Teeming with jungles and coral reef, Bohol is a magnet for adventurous travellers. You can go diving at the tiny Panglao Island to see some of the world’s most unusual shells, including the Gloria Maris and the Golden Cowry. Those who prefer to explore on land can get a glimpse of the island’s cherished native insectivorous primates, the bug-eyed tarsiers, at the Philippine Tarsier Sanctuary in Canapnapan.
Dozens of smaller islands dot the waters of Bohol, each with their own distinct attractions. Lamanok Island, about seven kilometres from Anda, is worth the small boat ride to see ancient cave paintings, reached by walking or paddling through remote caves. Visit Alona Beach on Panglao Island to find a lively string of beach cafes and bars, with live music and dancing.
The capital of Bohol, Tagbilaran is another dining hotspot with many traditional Filipino eateries and restobars. It’s also home to the Bohol National Museum, which displays anthropological artefacts found on the Anda Peninsula, including a 500-year-old Boholana.
Getting around Bohol
Within the populated towns of Bohol, you can catch a ride on a tricycle or habal-habal motorcycle, where it’s common to share the journey with other riders. Motorised vehicles are recommended for cruising the roads leading to the Chocolate Hills or out to the lakes of Pilar. Passenger vans and day-tour cars offer excursions all over Bohol, and private boats or ferries transport visitors to surrounding islands.